Lost in the Tim Tebow debate this year has been the upswing on the defensive side of the ball.
The Broncos have yet to become the defense they really want to be. That much is clear. Yet they are no longer last in the league in yards allowed per game (22nd).
Much of this incremental upswing can be attributed to Von Miller and the signing of Brodrick Bunkley. However, I believe the signing of defensive coordinator Dennis Allen--along with his aggressive style and 4-3 scheme--has been a big factor. We all thought Allen would create more pressure on the quarterback. It turns out Broncos fans were correct in that assumption.
Today I'd like to look at some of the tools that Allen uses against the pass to get the most out of a defense that was one of the worst in Broncos history only a year ago.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his weekly film review, Andy Benoit is stunned that Oakland didn't spy Tim Tebow as much as Miami had, and he's baffled that the Raiders were so ill-prepared for Denver's zone read when considering the Broncos' lack of offensive diversity. Yes, Tebow & Co. had a few big pass plays including the two scores, but if 113 net yards on 23 attempts + sacks were enough to keep a defense honest, the whole league would be showing a 60/40 run/pass split every week. Seriously. It will be an outright shock if any Denver opponent going forward does not truly sell out to stop the run and keep Tebow in the pocket; doesn't mean it'll work or that the Broncos won't be able to win any more games in Sunday's manner (presumably Tebow will make at least some plays through the air, and hopefully the defense plays better than it has been), but don't expect other teams to be so hapless in defending the zone read.
Benoit also blames personnel for Oakland's problems (the absence of LB Rolando McClain), and on the other side of the ball, Benoit thinks the injury to C Samson Satele and their typical slew of penalties are what caused the Oakland rushing offense to go from gashing Denver early to struggling later. Benoit saw Dennis Allen's use of Von Miller as an inside blitzer as a great new wrinkle and isn't yet buying the notion that the real Elvis Dumervil is quite back.
Happy Victory Tuesday, friends. I hope you’re ready for a Serving, because I’ve got one for you. I’m in last place in the picks competition, and a primary reason why is that I’m now 2-6 in picking Broncos games. (I had them losing to Green Bay, and beating Miami.) You can’t win them all, I guess, and I just don't seem to have a great feel for when the Broncos are going to play well. Maybe if I read the DP rather than Doug's parsing of their work, I might know if they "had a good week of practice."
Anyway, today we’re going to explore in detail why the Broncos beat the Raiders on Sunday. It was a total team win, as has been said, but more than that, I would say that it was the first time this season that the offense pulled its weight. Aside from a couple of missed throws by Tim Tebow and some penalties (I’m looking at you, Ryan Clady) it was a consistent and productive effort. Since offense is kind of my thing, I’m excited to spend some time talking about it. Ready… BEGIN!!
Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his latest mailbag, Mike Klis says he doesn't know how far the zone-read can take Denver, but it's the best offense for Tim Tebow to be running at this point. Plus, he thinks the Broncos will clearly be targeting a top cornerback and defensive tackle in next year's draft, along with of course a quarterback and a running back. Klis thinks Denver will try to hang onto Brodrick Bunkley, who is a free agent after this season, along with Marcus Thomas.
As for quarterbacks, Klis also says that the new rookie pay scale could make a big trade up in the draft to get one to be more palatable, as the cost is more about the picks being dealt away rather than a huge chunk of guaranteed money as in the past. He thinks that unless Miami has the #1 pick, Denver will have a chance to trade up to select Andrew Luck.
Google+ released "business pages" today, similar to fan pages on Facebook, a place for your brand to have its own page.
So we jumped on it and It's All Over, Fat Man! now has its own Google+ page.
The IAOFM staff discuss the Denver Broncos' 38-24 Week 9 victory over the Raiders in Oakland
Doc: Hi, folks
Ted: Happy Sunday, guys
Doug: Hey guys - lots of boring football so far today. 6 of the 7 losing teams have 13 or fewer points, and the other has 16 - and only one game closer than 10 points
Ted: Yeah, it seems like it. I was at a Browns watch party a little while ago, and they had a couple of other bad games on too. Hopefully this game is more interesting
Doc: I saw a headline to the extent that Cleveland is getting tired of Hillis and might even let him go. Any truth, or just media pandering?
Ted: It's been the word on the DL around here all season
Doug: Lombardi says part of Denver trading him was because of the same stuff
Ted: The thing about White Boy Day is that eventually tomorrow comes. He's a good player who does a couple things well and a couple poorly - that's been my take all the way
Good Morning, Broncos fans! It all went according to plan yesterday, as Denver was able to exploit the Raiders' struggling run defense to the tune of 298 rushing yards, won the turnover battle (three Carson Palmer INTs to no Denver giveaways) and got a big special teams play in the form of an 85-yard Eddie Royal punt return to beat the Raiders 38-24 (box score). In other words, the Broncos finally turned the tables on Oakland and beat them at their own game, physically outmatching them for the first time in over two years.
Willis McGahee gashed Oakland for 163 yards and two scores, while Tim Tebow added 117 rushing yards and two sharp TD passes, one each to Eric Decker and Royal. Tebow took just two sacks and did not fumble, clearly playing better than he had against Detroit even if he still threw some brutal passes throughout the game; Tebow ended up with a 98.1 QB Rating for the game and is now 2-1 as a starter this year (3-3 for his career) with both wins coming on the road (Denver won only one road game last year, at Tennessee).
There was a quarterback today who looked lost, threw multiple interceptions, drowned in the pocket, and lost the confidence of his entire organizaton and city.
His name wasn't Tim Tebow.
Tebow was all but given up on a week ago; multiple reports had him walking the plank by halftime.
Those reports have been greatly exaggerated.
Yo, ho, ho, and a bottle of Broncos Kool-Aid. Tim Tebow used the zone-read option to escort the
Raiders dancing pirates to Davy Jones' Locker.
Avast, Broncos fans. Tebowmania is back for another voyage.
Let's get to the Positive, the Negatives, and the Who the Heck Knows?
Enjoy the games, everyone - and Go Broncos!
Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his column today, Dave Krieger suggests that Tim Tebow's window as Denver's starting QB is closing, and he points to a quote from Champ Bailey earlier in the week as proof that Tim's teammates don't believe he has the talent to make it in the NFL. Said Bailey,
You can be as competitive and have as much heart as possible, but if you don't have the talent for this league, it's hard to play.
Obviously, this line could be interpreted as being about the team as a whole or in general, but since he mentions heart and competitiveness, who do you think he's really talking about? Krieger also checks in with former Buff Kordell Stewart, who thinks Tebow is benefitting from a double standard of sorts in getting a chance to play at this point. Ultimately, Krieger thinks Tebow has to show marked improvement today or be replaced by Brady Quinn next week at KC.